Tuesday, January 29, 2019

2019 AstroKNOWmy: An Astronomy Quiz Bee

The Judenite’s Astronomical Organization (JAO), which is the first and official astronomical community in Saint Jude Catholic School, has a primary aim of promoting the education, understanding, awareness, and interest involving astronomy among the Filipino youths through various hands-on activities designed to pique their curiosity. In line with our desire to promote astronomy to the Filipino community, the JAO will be organizing a quiz bee entitled “AstroKNOWmy: An Astronomy Quiz Show” at Saint Jude Catholic School on January 24, 2019, from 8:30 am to 4:00 pm.

The nature of the questions of this competition delves more on analytical and computational skills. Hence, the usual competition questions of identification are avoided in this quiz bee because the organizers (yours truly) believes that a true measure of gauging the knowledge of its participants is through knowing the concept more than the terms.  Overall, there are ten categories in this quiz bee namely: Sky, History of Astronomy, Solar System, Astronomy News, Cosmology, Stars, Galaxies, Astrophysics, Theory of Relativity, and Quantum Mechanics.

The program started at around 8:30 AM. The participants were briefed first about the contest mechanics. Furthermore, warm welcomes were given to the participants from Father Emil Lim, Saint Jude's school director. The elimination round started at around 9:30 AM. The final round started at around 1:30 PM due to difficulty in checking the papers. The program closed at around 3:00 PM with a closing remark from Father Paulino Belamide, the school principal of Saint Jude.

Overall, there are 11 schools who have participated namely:
1. Philippine Science High School - Central Mindanao Campus
2. Sta. Lucia High School
3. Unida Christian Colleges
4. Bestlink Colleges of the Philippines
5. Informatics College Caloocan
6. Saint Peter the Apostle School
7. Far Eastern University High School
8. Chiang Kai Shek College
9. Ateneo de Manila Senior High School
10. Philippine Science High School - Main Campus
11. Informatics International Colleges - Cainta Campus 

The top ten finalists are the following:
The winners are:
1. Champion: Philippine Science High School - Main Campus Team C
2. First runner-up: Philippine Science High School - Main Campus Team B
3. Second runner-up: Ateneo de Manila High School Team A

Other pictures from the event:
Registration table. JAO members Curt Bernardo and Diane Tan manning the registration table at the event.
Participants waiting for the program to begin.
JAO members Linnel Sytat and Geanine Balolong playing music for the participants.
Diane Tan leading the prayer for this event
Father Lim's opening remarks. 
Janina Uygongco and Jeremy Ace Ng serve as the host for this event
Participants listening to the contest mechanics. 
Participants going down to the science laboratories for the elimination round
Curt Bernardo guarding the participants for the elimination round
A participant taking the elimination round
From president to liquid eraser carrier real quick.
Checking of elimination round papers
3D printed medals and trophies for this event
Group photo

The goal of this competition is to spread the importance and awareness of people in the field of astronomy and physics. I, together with the organizers, are confident that we are able to achieve this goal because, after the competition, the participants and the coaches are approaching us to ask more about physics and astronomy. Ad Astra per Aspera!

***This is for my IB CAS Requirements
My primary role for this competition is to serve as the overall coordinator for all of the committees of this competition. Because of this, there is a need for me to constantly hold meetings to ensure that everyone is doing their tasks and to make sure that all the details are perfect and running smoothly (communicator and LO5). Not only did my task end here. Aside from the fact that I have to draft the invitational letters and contest mechanics to the different schools, I am also assigned to construct all of the questions for this quiz bee and to verify its accuracy. My integrity is greatly challenged in doing this. Honestly, some of the participants in the quiz bee are my personal friend and I know that they studied hard because I know they want to win this competition. If I am not principled, I would've leaked the questions to them, but since I am principled, I didn't and I am proud of it (principled).

I honestly thought at first that organizing this competition will be easy since I have prior background experiences already when it comes to organizing competition. Little did I know that this undeniably would be the hardest event that I organized. I am confident that since I was able to send the invitational letter to different schools a month prior, a lot of schools would immediately sign up (late November 2018). However, come December 2018, and only one school signed up for the competition and my club moderator and I are really panicking already. There are a lot of questions that ran in my head like, "What if schools weren't able to receive my letters?" to "Are my organizing skills are horrible?" to "Oh I must have done something to receive such little participants." Honestly, the only thing that is keeping me from scraping this competition altogether is my integrity. I am afraid that I will lose my professionalism in my field if I would just announce that I would organize something this day and the following day I would just take my words back. Because of this, since I know that there is no turning back already, I took the risk of not scrapping this competition and I worked hard to get participants. I would constantly resend and resend letters to ensure that schools would be able to receive my letter. Because of this, we invited a total of more than 100 schools. Not only did my problems end here. Since I want the contest questions to be more analytical than identification, and the questions that I am asking are not the usual ones, I have to research a lot. Because of this, I developed more knowledge in the field of astronomy and physics. This is honestly hard to do since I have tons of IA to write. I wished I have nothing to do, but no. IB is so real this year 2. Because of my perseverance and dedication, I was able to overcome these two problems and a lot more problems which arose in this event (LO1, LO2, LO3, LO4, knowledgeable, and risk-taker)

Even though I encountered a lot of problems in organizing this event, altogether, I am very happy that I pushed through this despite all of the hardships that I encountered. I can honestly say that after this event, my stress management skills are better. Furthermore, my bad attitude of having a panic attack easily was improved since during the competition, despite some problems surfacing, I was able to remain calm. Last but not the least, the very goal why I organized this event is to spread the importance and awareness of astronomy and physics to the Filipino community. I am very happy that I was able to achieve this.  

No comments:

Post a Comment